Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honour Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defence to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behaviour in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit,
Comment: If you notice the quoted passage ends with a comma. There is more to the sentence and we will deal with that tomorrow. But that end bit reminds us that if we have to suffer then Christ has been through it even to death but is alive again. It restates that He did died for us, unrighteous people.
But the passage starts with a rhetorical question. We would assume that the answer should be ‘no one’. But immediately he denies that. In that period the people to whom he was writing could and did often suffer. So do many Christians in the world today. No matter, Peter says, just go on being beyond reproach. Be prepared to share your faith but not in a belligerent and disrespectful way. You may get ill-treated for being good, but that is much better than because you are evil and deserving of what you get! Not said here in so many words but the concept is ‘leave it in God’s hands! Christ did and we are His followers.
Prayer: Even if I find it difficult to stand firm under some circumstances, please help me not to waver.